Fulham were unable to find a breakthrough in the absence of the league’s top scorer Aleksandar Mitrovic as they were held to 0-0 by the last club Derby at Craven Cottage.
Marco Silva’s side were looking for an eighth consecutive victory but were turned down by the determined team of Wayne Rooney. Fulham was frustrated after being unable to capitalize on a succession of good chances, Silva later revealing that “six or seven players”, including Mitrovic, were affected by the disease.
“It’s a good point, a very difficult game against one of the best teams in the division,” Rooney said afterwards. “After last week, to get four points against Bournemouth and Fulham, they deserve the credit for it.”
“I make great demands on the players every day and they haven’t let me down at all,” Rooney added. “We will keep fighting and pushing, you never know – even if there is a small chance to stand.”
“It certainly wasn’t our best performance, but we created enough to win the game,” said Silva. “It’s something that can happen. We lost to Blackpool when Mitro played – he’s an important player but that’s not the reason we didn’t win the game.
Bornemouth couldn’t find the win they needed to go on top as they shared the loot with Millwall in a 1-1 draw at the Den. Dominic Solanke opened the scoring for Scott Parker’s side, who seemed to be heading for victory before Benik Afobe’s equalizer in the second half changed the pattern of the game.
“I thought we were holding out for much of the second half,” Bournemouth manager Scott Parker said. “I think there was only one team at the end that was going to win the game and it certainly wasn’t us, so I think overall that’s a well-deserved point.”
Feedthe three-game winning streak ended in a surprise loss to City of Bristol at Ashton Gate, with Potters manager Michael O’Neill criticizing referee Oliver Langford after the game.
Tyreeq Bakinson stole the winner in the 38th minute after a long throw from Tomas Kalas was knocked back in his way, while Stoke hit the woodwork twice and missed plenty of chances before Joe Allen was sent off in the stoppage of play.
“The officials have missed so much in this game and the referee needs to be stronger and braver than he was tonight,” said O’Neill, who felt his team should have received three penalties and the Bristol City midfielder Ayman Benarous should have been sent off.
“It wasn’t a good tackle from their young boy on Mario Vrancic because he was off the ground,” said O’Neill. “He caught Mario and nowadays that was a tackle you can’t do. We were clearly the better team, but the goal gave them something to cling to in the second half.
Blackburn are seventh, one point behind Stoke, after a resounding 4-0 win over Peterborough. Harry Pickering led Rovers in the lead, with Ben Brereton Díaz and Darragh Lenihan also finding the net before half-time. Díaz then added a fourth on the hour to complete the score.
Luke Amos scored a late winner for QPR as they beat Huddersfield 1-0 and climbed to fourth place in the standings. Just returning from his second long-term knee injury, Amos headed Chris Willock’s cross with nine minutes left at Kiyan Prince Foundation Stadium.
QPR director Mark Warburton paid tribute to Amos after his winner. “I’m thrilled for Luke after what he’s been through,” he said. “He deserves this moment because he worked tirelessly. You won’t find a better young professional.
Olivier Ntcham and Jamie Paterson struck in the second half for Swansea as the first match of Poya Asbaghi in charge of Barnsley ended in a 2-0 loss, their 10th loss in 11 matches. Ntcham scored from close range in the 74th minute before Paterson doubled the lead five minutes later.
Keane Lewis-Potter scored the only goal of the game as shell won 1-0 to Cardiff to climb above their fellow wrestlers and up to 19th in the table.